1. Between Two Worlds: Jean Price-Mars, Haiti, and Africa (Black Diasporic Worlds: Origins and Evolutions from New World Slaving) (Lexington Books, 2018) edited by Celucien L. Joseph, Jean Eddy Saint Paul, and Glodel Mezilas
The goal of this book is fourfold: it explores the contributions of Jean Price-Mars to Haitian history and culture, it studies Price-Mars’ engagement with Western history and the problem of the “racist narrative,” it interprets Price-Mars’ connections with Black Internationalism, Harlem Renaissance, and the Negritude Movement, and finally, the book underscores Price-Mars’ contributions to post colonialism, religious studies, Africana Studies, and Pan-Africanism.
Between Two Worlds: Jean Price-Mars, Haiti, and Africa is an important collection that reflects on the work and intellectual impact of Jean Price-Mars, a titan of Africana thought. Price-Mars’s research spoke to multiple academic disciplines, including, but not limited to, Africana Studies, Anthropology, Geography, Sociology, History, Religious Studies, Philosophy, and Literature. Joseph, Mezilas, and Saint Paul have assembled an impressive line-up of thought-provoking essays that render the accomplishments, ideas, and influences of Price-Mars’s work visible to new audiences across academic disciplines in the hopes of creating a better, more humane world for Haitians and other people of African descent. This book is a must-read; it honors one of the major contributors to Pan-Africanist thought, Negritude, and Black Atlantic Humanism who deserves to be recognized and engaged in the struggle for a more humane world that recognizes equality between the races and the fundamental humanity of Black people. (Bertin M. Louis, author of My Soul Is in Haiti: Protestantism in the Haitian Diaspora of the Bahamas)
2. Baron de Vastey and the Origins of Black Atlantic Humanism (The New Urban Atlantic) (Palgrave Macmillan, 2017) by Marlen Daut
Focusing on the influential life and works of the Haitian political writer and statesman, Baron de Vastey (1781-1820), in this book Marlene L. Daut examines the legacy of Vastey’s extensive writings as a form of what she calls black Atlantic humanism, a discourse devoted to attacking the enlightenment foundations of colonialism. Daut argues that Vastey, the most important secretary of Haiti’s King Henry Christophe, was a pioneer in a tradition of deconstructing colonial racism and colonial slavery that is much more closely associated with twentieth-century writers like W.E.B. Du Bois, Frantz Fanon, and Aimé Césaire. By expertly forging exciting new historical and theoretical connections among Vastey and these later twentieth-century writers, as well as eighteenth- and nineteenth-century black Atlantic authors, such as Phillis Wheatley, Olaudah Equiano, William Wells Brown, and Harriet Jacobs, Daut proves that any understanding of the genesis of Afro-diasporic thought must include Haiti’s Baron de Vastey.
The book provides a reconceptualization of Roumain's intellectual itineraries against the backdrop of two public spheres: a national public sphere (Haiti) and a transnational public sphere (the global world). Second, it remaps and reframes Roumain's intellectual circuits and his critical engagements within a wide range of intellectual traditions, cultural and political movements, and philosophical and religious systems. Third, the book argues that Roumain's perspective on religion, social development, and his critiques of religion in general and of institutionalized Christianity in particular were substantially influenced by a Marxist philosophy of history and secular humanist approach to faith and human progress.
Finally, the book advances the idea that Roumain's concept of development is linked to the theories of democratic socialism, relational anthropology, distributive justice, and communitarianism. Ultimately, this work demonstrates that Roumain believed that only through effective human solidarity and collaboration can serious social transformation and real human emancipation take place.
"Celucien Joseph offers a definitive study of Jacques Roumain as an engaged 'native intellectual, ' whose novels, essays, and public intellectual interventions in the Haitian cultural sphere should be regarded of global importance. Joseph's thorough analysis of Roumain's Marxist, anti-clerical, anti-capitalistic, pro-peasant, spiritual, Kreyol, community-focused perspectives re-awakens for a contemporary audience the genius and insight of a sleeping giant in a world still yearning for vision, transformation, and healing in the wake of (neo)colonialism's violent imprint."
--Myriam J. A. Chancy, Hartley Burr Alexander Chair, Scripps College; Guggenheim Fellow
These are Toussaint Louverture’s last words before being taken to prison in France. Heroic leader of the only successful slave revolt in history, Louverture is one of the greatest anti-imperialist fighters who ever lived. Born into slavery on a Caribbean plantation, he was able to break from his bondage to lead an army of freed African slaves to victory against the professional armies of France, Spain, and Britain in the Haitian Revolution of 1791-1804.
In this lively narrative biography, Louverture’s fascinating life is explored through the prism of his radical politics. Charles Forsdick and Christian Høgsbjerg champion the “black Robespierre,” whose revolutionary legacy has inspired people and movements in the two centuries since his death. For anyone interested in the roots of modern resistance movements and black political radicalism, Louverture’s extraordinary life provides the perfect groundwork.
Advance praise: 'This book is a deeply-researched and lucidly-reasoned study of migration, race, nation, and empire in what may be the first instance of the guestworker programs and massive deportations that would come to characterize contemporary global migrations. Casey explores the process from above - the triangular power relations between states and elites - and below - the migrant's transnational strategies of resistance and adaptation - in a manner that is creative, dialectical, and eye-opening.' José C. Moya, Columbia University
Advance praise: 'A major achievement, Matthew Casey's extraordinary study peels away the obfuscating layers of conventional history to present in glimmering details the daily trials and rewards of early twentieth century Haitian migrants in Cuba. The book is more than a migration narrative: it is a profound reminder that the intricate evolution of Caribbean nations in a world of empire cannot be fully understood without close study of their past connections.' Matthew J. Smith, University of the West Indies, Mona